The suburban energy balance in Miami, Florida

T Newton, T R Oke, C S B Grimmond, M Roth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Summertime measurements of local scale energy balance of a suburban site in west Miami, Florida, in 1995 are presented. All of the radiation and turbulent heat fluxes were measured directly. In addition several derived surface characteristics are calculated including the albedo, radiation temperature, emissivity, aerodynamic and canopy resistances, Bowen's ratio, Priestley-Taylor and McNaughton-Jarvis coefficients. The results are used to test parameterizations to calculate several heat fluxes. Most radiation fluxes can be calculated with simple schemes in cloudless conditions but the spatial and temporal variability of cloud degrades results greatly. This highlights the value of observing incoming solar radiation since it can form an excellent surrogate for daytime net all-wave radiation in all sky conditions. The heat flux results for this warm, wet subtropical site demonstrate similarities with those from similarly developed locations in temperate climates. Interestingly this finding includes the fraction of energy used in evaporation. It is thought that this may be related to the relatively large heat storage in Miami which may reflect the presence of wet soils and free-standing water, the persistently low vapor pressure deficits (7-14 hPa) typical of this humid climate and the relatively poor coupling between the surface and the whole planetary boundary layer due to relatively low surface roughness
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)331 - 347
Number of pages17
JournalGeografiska Annaler Series A-Physical Geography
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2007


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